OCC chef presents tasty cooking demo at Saturday Market

This Saturday, the Farmington Farmers Market welcomes Oakland Community College (OCC) chef Julie Selonke for its first cooking demo since 2019.

The OCC-sponsored event, which includes demo of a flavorful tandoori shrimp recipe and samples, begins at 11 a.m. on the bricks just south of the Sundquist Pavilion. The recipe will match culinary prowess with market bounty.

Farmington Farmers Market chef demo
Chef Julie Selonke, of Oakland Community College’s culinary program, gets help from the Farmington Farmers Market’s Agnes Skrzycki at Bill Gass’s farmstand on Saturday, August 7. Selonke will give the market’s first cooking demonstration since 2019 on August 14 on the bricks south of the Sundquist Pavilion. (Farmington Farmers Market)

Chef Selonke stopped by the market last Saturday to shop for ingredients. She teamed with farmer Bill Gass, who donated a big box of heirloom tomatoes that Selonke will use to create a flavorful Indian dish–Tandoori shrimp in tomato sauce, inspired by one of her students at the culinary school. Her visit was quite enlightening.

“We were wowed by the plethora of amazing fruits, vegetables and local artists,” Chef Selonke said. “We met with farmer Bill from Gass Centennial Farms and were inspired to feature their incredible heirloom tomatoes as the major component of our dish.”

Selonke’s passion for food was first developed in the most influential of all kitchens–her grandmother’s. She moved from her hometown of Wichita to Michigan with her Detroit-born husband 28 years ago to pursue her goal of becoming a chef.

Eventually, she understudied with Chef Brian Walsh at the prestigious Oakland Hills Country Club for eight years. She also trained under the James Beard Award-winning Chef Takashi Yagahashi at Farmington Hills’ Tribute Restaurant, then heralded as “the finest in Detroit” by the New York Times.

In 2011, Selonke began teaching the full gamut of culinary, management and leadership courses at OCC. She has been program co-ordinator for the last five years.

OCC is a proud sponsor of the Farmington Farmers Market.

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